A book titled “The First Americans: In Pursuit of Archaeology’s Greatest Mystery” by Dr. James Adovasio, director of the Mercyhurst Archaeological Institute, with Jake Page, will be in bookstores starting Aug. 20.
Published by Random House, the 352-page hardcover volume will retail for $25.95. Following are excerpts from reviews of the book that appear at Amazon.com:
“This book offers us a frank exploration of the often-nasty debates that swirl around the earliest archaeological sites that the Americas have to offer and the archaeologists who study them. A book like this could be written only by a bold insider, someone who has long worked in the area, has participated in all the debates, knows all the players, and is fearless. Adovasio is all these things. He is also honest; insofar as I have first-hand knowledge of the events described in this book, his account rings true. Participants in the debate are forewarned: the gloves are off here.” - Donald K. Grayson, Professor of Anthropology, University of Washington
“ ‘The First Americans’ will take you down the meanest streets in archaeology. James Adovasio is the perfect guide to the science, the infighting, and the passion surrounding a deceptively simple question: when was the Western Hemisphere first peopled? Read to find where the bodies are buried. Read for enjoyment. But above all, read for honest answers.” - Clive Gamble, Centre for the Archaeology of Human Origins, University of Southampton, United Kingdom
Adovasio is best known as the father of the Mercyhurst archaeology department, which began with his arrival in 1990. It was Adovasio's highly successful excavations at the Meadowcroft Rockshelter in Washington County, Pa., from 1973 to 1979 that earned him an international reputation as one of the world's leading archaeologists. He is a research associate with the Smithsonian Institution and the Carnegie Museum. His work and research accomplishments have been the subject of articles in Time, The Smithsonian Magazine, The Chronicle of Higher Education, National Geographic and the New York Times.
In addition to leading the Mercyhurst archaeology/anthropology/geology department to an internationally recognized level, Adovasio has also become heavily involved in the efforts of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
Adovasio, a native of Youngstown, Ohio, earned his bachelor of arts in anthropology, magna cum laude, from the University of Arizona in 1965 and his doctoral degree in anthropology from the University of Utah in 1970.